12. Fitting brakes

Fit brakes: Depending on if you are building a fixed gear or a single speed, you will fit front only or front and rear brakes. Our project is a single speed bicycle, so we will fit front and rear brakes. A pair of single pivot side-pull calliper brakes is suitable for narrow racing tyres.

Brake units are usually found, ready to install. The procedure of securing and centering the brakes is described below:

  1. Check the brake units to make sure that the calliper arms move freely around the pivot of the centre bolt, but without lateral motion. If there is lateral motion, you might have to loosen the locking nut and readjust the tightness of the unit and then lock it again
  2. For front brakes insert the centre bolt of the unit into the hole in the fork from the front of the bike
  3. Secure the unit from the back not forgetting the appropriate spacers. Tighten the brake nut, while keeping the locking nut steady from the other side with your other arm
  4. Attach the brake shoes which come in pairs ensure tha the surface is flat else file down to make it flat
  5. Repeat the process for the rear unit